Estia closes 19 Melbourne aged care homes to visitors for two weeks as COVID-19 cases surge

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An over-reaction or a proactive move?

The listed provider says it has been carefully monitoring the situation in Victoria – which has had 14 consecutive days of double-digit cases – and decided to temporarily close its 19 residential aged care homes to visitors – apart from on compassionate grounds – from midnight on Monday for 14 days.

“We have apologised to our residents and their families for this short-term inconvenience however the safety, health and wellbeing of the vulnerable residents in our care is always our priority,” the provider said in a statement.

“We are continuing to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely and will look to re-open our Melbourne homes to visitors as soon as it is safe to do so.”

The closures do not apply to its homes in Victoria outside of Melbourne.

Victoria recorded its highest number of new cases on Monday with 75 cases, with 64 new cases recorded yesterday.

Will other Melbourne providers follow suit?

It is also important to remember that many of the people who work in aged care are from migrant communities – which are where the Melbourne hotspots are located.

What will be the impact on the workforce in those areas?